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December 26, 2023

What Are The Potential Risks Or Complications Associated With All-on-4® Dental Implants?

All-on-4® dental implants are a game-changing solution for people with tooth or bone loss. Through only four implants in each jawbone, your smile and oral function can be restored with this dental treatment.

However, like any medical procedure, the All-on-4® treatment can have potential issues. If you’re thinking about getting All-on-4® dental implants, it’s essential to understand the associated risks and complications. 

This article will explore the potential risks and complications associated with All-on-4® surgery and recovery and the best way to avoid them to ensure you’re left with a healthy, radiant smile.

How Successful Is All-on-4®?

Pioneered by Dr Paulo Malo, All-on-4® is a dental restoration solution that offers a long-term, fixed alternative to dentures.

All-on-4® works by replacing an arch of teeth supported on only four implants in either the upper or lower jawbone. When you undergo the All-on-4® treatment at Next Smile Australia, it happens in two stages

Stage one involves your All-on-4® surgery, where you have the four dental implants surgically placed and receive a provisional bridge that you wear for three to six months while your bone fuses with dental implants. You usually receive your temporary teeth within the same day of surgery or 24 hours.

Stage two of the All-on-4® process involves you being fitted with your final set of teeth. 

So, how successful is All-on-4®? Compared to older dental treatment methods, All-on-4® not only reduces the number of dental implants required but has a proven success rate of 98%. So, you can have peace of mind knowing the All-on-4® dental implant risks and complications are less than 3%. 

Possible Risks During Surgery

Although All-on-4® has a success rate of 98%, there are possible risks that can occur during surgery, such as:

Nerve damage

The lower jaw has many nerves that must be avoided during All-on-4® dental implant surgery. 

However, if these nerves become damaged during implant placement, you may experience tingling, numbness or pain in your lower lip or chin area. 

While nerve damage can occur in any type of dental surgery, it tends to be more common in All-on-4® surgeries due to the number of implants and their positioning along the jawbone. However, studies have shown that only 1% of dental surgeries result in nerve damage

One of the best ways to reduce your All-on-4® dental implant risks is to choose a skilled All-on-4® dental surgeon who has extensive experience and knows the best position to place implants without causing nerve damage. 3D imaging is integral to planning the placement of dental implants to avoid nerves. At Next Smile Australia, all of our clinics have state-of-the-art 3D scanners, and every patient undergoing the All-on-4® treatment will need a 3D scan. 

Sinus issues 

If you are undergoing the All-on-4® treatment for upper arch rehabilitation, there is a chance that your sinuses could be affected. 

One of the more common dental implant complications in All-on-4® is the risk of one or more of the implants penetrating your sinus cavity if they aren’t positioned correctly. 

If this happens, it will require additional surgery and/or antibiotics to restore the damage. 

However, while the chances of this happening are low, it’s best to undergo the All-on-4® treatment with experienced dental surgeons from Next Smile Australia where a 3D scan will be conducted prior to treatment.  

Gum colour mismatch 

When you undergo All-on-4® surgery at Next Smile Australia, our dental labs create your new sets of teeth using genuine Nobel Biocare components.

And while, in most cases, your All-on-4® prosthesis matches the exact colour of your gum tissues, sometimes, it may not be an exact match. 

If this happens, you may need to have the bridge replaced or refinished to match your gum colour. 

Bite misalignment 

Another one of the potential All-on-4® dental implant risks is bite misalignment, which can happen when an implant isn’t placed correctly in your jawbone.

When this happens, it can cause an imbalance in your bite, which can lead to other problems such as TMJ disorder

To avoid the risk of this, ensure your All-on-4® dental implant surgeon takes precise measures before placing the implants and ensures your teeth are correctly aligned after surgery. 

Possible Complications During Recovery

All-on-4® dental implant risks aren’t limited to surgery; there are possible complications that can arise during the recovery period, such as:

Mouth infection 

The chance of infection after any type of dental surgery isn’t high, but it’s still possible, especially during the All-on-4® treatment. 

Unlike traditional dental restoration methods, All-on-4® involves placing four dental implants in each jawbone. Due to the number of implants involved and how deep they go into the gum tissue, it’s important to know that infection can arise after surgery, especially if you don’t practice good oral hygiene or smoke/vape.

Symptoms of infection include pain, swelling and bad breath. To avoid an infection after All-on-4® surgery, maintain regular brushing and follow the aftercare instructions provided by your dental surgeon.

Dental implant failure

While All-on-4® has a proven success rate of 98%, there is still a chance that the dental implants may fail. 

The most common cause of implant failure is poor osseointegration. While it’s not always clear why the implants fail to fuse with the bone, several factors can increase the risk of failure, such as bone deficiencies, poor treatment planning, infection, smoking, or uncontrolled diabetes. 

To avoid the risk of dental implant failure, patients should avoid alcohol and smoking after the procedure and follow the aftercare instructions provided. 

Gum infection/disease 

Gum infection or disease can occur if bacteria enter the gum tissue surrounding the implants.

To prevent this from happening, brushing and flossing every day is essential after undergoing All-on-4® surgery, along with regular six monthly visits for hygiene and checkups. 

Avoiding Risks And Complications

While there are few All-on-4® dental implant risks and complications, they could still happen to you. So, what’s the best way to avoid those risks and complications? 

Maintain good oral hygiene 

One of the best ways to avoid dental implant complications with All-on-4® is to maintain good oral hygiene. 

Regular brushing, flossing and routine dental check-ups will help reduce the chance of infection and other possible complications. 

Choose an experienced All-on-4® dental surgeon 

Choosing an All-on-4® dental surgeon with many years of experience, such as those at Next Smile Australia, can minimise the chance of issues arising from poor treatment planning or implant misplacement. 

Follow a healthy diet 

Eating nutrient-rich food and avoiding hard, crunchy foods can help maintain bone health and promote healing after All-on-4® surgery.

It’s particularly important to eat soft foods during the initial recovery period to not damage your new teeth or disrupt the healing process.

Book A Consultation At Next Smile Australia 


With a 98% success rate, All-on-4® supports an entire bridge of teeth on only four implants. 

If you have lost all or multiple teeth, you may be a candidate for the All-on-4® treatment. 

If you’d like to learn more about the All-on-4® treatment or think you may be a candidate, book a consultation at Next Smile Australia.

We look forward to helping you journey towards a new, natural-looking smile.

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